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Everything posted by Hippogriff

  1. I've been doing this Landlord gig for quite a while... and continue to do so... despite what I predict is coming around the corner if any Government gets into power that has an ability to push through an agenda... and I would, genuinely, urge caution - to think of this now is implying you've kinda missed the boat, at least a little bit. You're also breaking a Landlording 101 rule... invest close to where you live. This is along the lines of... don't let to family or friends. Just as a general rule, you understand? Your plan seems like a flight of fancy to me - your questions are too naïve - "what are the Tenants going to be like in specific areas?" - that's not even remotely how it works. You cannot judge Tenants on the locality. You judge Tenants on your own impressions, their employment (or not), their credit histories and references! If you want to dip your toe into this area then proceed - but circumspectly - unless you want to effectively be a silent investor and pass over a portion of your income to a Letting Agent who will fully manage your property, then get something close to home you can manage effectively. Midlands to Sheffield is insane. I found it annoying enough just the other night when a Tenant 7 miles from me required me to pop over and re-pressurise the boiler because of something they'd done - the boiler is fine, well-maintained - it was down to them, but trying to explain how to turn 2 valves on the underside to sort it was beyond them, so it required me to take a trip over - 20 minutes at the property all is good again (and, yes, I had explained how to do that at the Check-In but people forget) but it was still an hour out of my night. So... closeness to the property, general knowledge you've displayed, Government agenda, Brexit uncertainty - they all say "wait" to me. In my experience the only thing you've got right in this is your desire to avoid Leasehold apartments (for reasons you understand). Good luck.
  2. I have used Nankivells in different properties over the years - I always go back there as first choice. I think the most expensive we've spent is about £3,500 for wardrobes with 3 massive soft-close sliding doors that were about 2.5m high... the least about £1,000 for a much shorter 2 door (still glass and sliding) wardrobe... the key thing is the quality of the work on offer here. It's top-notch in all of my experience and - yes, I admit it - I always ask for the same Fitter (which I should not do, but I prefer to wait until he's got a slot). I've recommended them to a friend and they got a large wardrobe in for a price that was £1,000 less than Sharps for the exact same specification! Exact. Sharps then kept phoning my friend up, offering small discount after small discount (just as described above, play-for-play) - they cannot even remotely compete because of their business model. Their Fitters are mostly sad that they end up working for Sharps. Give the guys at Nankivells a go... if you spend enough you get a bouquet of flowers... ha! I don't think you'll regret it. They don't just do wardrobes... they'll turn their hand to any storage solution, and kitchens (not used them for that, yet). P.S. - just mentally totted-up what we've spent with Nankivells over the years and over the properties - it's a lot more than £10,000... don't regret any of it. P.S. - Sharps, I've heard, make a big deal of laying on carpet... they want to rip it up and they did this to my friend's sister - badly, leaving frayed edges... Nankivells will lay onto carpet if you ask them to - I always do and I've never, touch wood, had a problem.
  3. RSH has plain smooth black rubber 12.5mm thick x 1400mm wide x 10M long... which can be cut. May be of interest...
  4. Thanks peeps - neither of these (certainly not matsgrids) seems to sell rubber access mats. I have written an email to RHS just to double-check though. Quite elusive... at least the answer wasn't easy... ;-)
  5. I'd seen this, but this is for laptops to sit on... not people, cars and plant. It's wholly unsuitable I'm afraid. I'm looking for the kind of things I linked to... rubber access mats... but just from somewhere more local.
  6. It is for grassed areas, yes, but this stuff isn't going to be suitable... I'm not over-specifying when I say it's the proper access mats I need. I realise some are rated to 50 tonnes, and I certainly don't need that... but this webbing / mesh won't suffice I'm afraid. I just figured somewhere in South Yorkshire would be a seller of these things... even if they're quite specialised.
  7. This might be better in Property and Housing, I dunno... but my Google skills are woefully failing me today. I am looking to buy a small quantity of these semi-industrial rubber access mats that people and cars and small pieces of plant can go on... things like this - https://www.multimatts.co.uk/eurotrak/medium-duty-eurotrak/eurotrak-single-sided-access-mat-1000mm-x-3000mm-x-15mm-44kg-tt-1000300044ss - or this - https://www.multimatts.co.uk/duramatt-single-sided-access-mat-2400mm-x-1200mm-x-6mm-dura-24001200-multimatts - but although they're readily available on the Internet there's often minimum orders (usually 90 mats!) or delivery charges approaching £100 (the price of a mat)... does anyone know a place in Sheffield or surrounding areas that might sell this kind of thing, where I could maybe get a more reasonable delivery charge, or even collect (they come in 2,400mm long by 1,200mm wide too)? Any pointers appreciated...
  8. I would probably turn that first job down and deliberately wait until the second offer happens before relocating... those commutes will take their toll.
  9. Try - http://base64online.org/decode/ - take from "i" to "==" and paste in, then hit Decode from Base64 - it'll show a 50x50 image that looks like some speckles. Use this to go the other way - http://base64online.org/encode/
  10. Not pertinent, in any way (there was no suggestion it was)... please move on to another thread to troll and not add value.
  11. To anyone who has plenty of experience in this area... I'm planning on filling some gaps in an external wall that has been rendered - patch job, sadly, can't afford to get it all re-done - and was thinking that I'd use some external filler I've got (https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B0046Q9MIA/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o04_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1) I can mix this up to just the right texture and apply it fine with a flat knife, sand it and paint it, all fine, but I want to know what people might use to get that kind of semi-raised, stippled, uneven effect that you see on some render finishes? Would something like this Artex Stipple Brush do me - https://www.amazon.co.uk/Artex-Stipple-Brush-Stippler-Stippling/dp/B00LNCFNUQ/ref=asc_df_B00LNCFNUQ/?tag=googshopuk-21&linkCode=df0&hvadid=309912023430&hvpos=1o1&hvnetw=g&hvrand=5987019225536967739&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=1006496&hvtargid=pla-695976666460&psc=1 or would some kind of textured roller do me better? The ones I see (rollers) are wood grain effect or flowers or stuff like that which possibly seems to be for home craft and / or artwork?
  12. Worth a try, but I think it's wishful thinking... you're talking about a pro-active Agent, and that's like a sasquatch. I never like the OIEO tag to properties... I prefer to just see a price, and then bid below it. To me, it seems hopeful to have OIEO... like the seller expects some kind of bidding war, exactly the opposite of what you're experiencing. What's the lowest you can go down to for the sums to work? There's no point you sitting on it fr months and months more if you have places to be. Looks to be Number 1, last sold for £160,000 in 2016..? And has always been about that money. For sure, the price being asked now doesn't seem out of whack... no-one would want to take a bath on it, unless forced. Zoopla estimate is £173,000. It's freehold, so all good there. The description doesn't mention any existing warranty... it should have some left, right? It has only been live for 1 month, though... maybe a bit of panic is setting-in when there may be no need?
  13. You appear to be blaming the Agent, rather than the product... which is often misguided. Most Agents (PurpleBricks and all the others) will just get it listed onto the property portals (most importantly Rightmove and Zoopla) and then react to enquiries - PurpleBricks will do this part just as well as anyone else... all you are missing (vs. a high street Agent, not especially or necessarily the ones you cite above) is the high street shop window... which most people just look in for curiosity at they pass... people don't do their serious house-hunting in shop windows. Agents simply aren't capable of strong-arming someone who doesn't want to buy your house into buying your house. That's why the people who're interested will always be the people who're interested anyway (not other people who were never interested)... all you need is it being out there... and one assumes it is. If you are struggling then do you know why? Is it lack of leads (that could be to do with the house or the time of year), is it tyre-kickers, is it low-ball offers (again, the house)? You went with PurpleBricks for a reason... obviously... likely the low and fixed fees... consider taking what you'll save there and using that money to either reduce the price or add an improvement to make the product seem more attractive. If you wish to post the link to your online advert then I am 100% positive various opinionated folk on here (!) will critique it (me too).
  14. The houses do have gardens so having a mower will be a good thing... but I would't mow on the way there... that would be mowing the lawns of others. You just do your own. It could, indeed, by my ex-Tenants that you spoke to, as they were, indeed, a couple and they do, indeed, live there. Best of luck... don't overbid on houses (as you already know they come up all the time and they're all, basically, the same)... except mine (it is the best one).
  15. It's a large development - and Stoneycroft Road is quite long-ish. For full disclosure, I have a property I let on that road and my last Tenants actually offered to buy the property from me (just as the previous Tenants had too!) and I politely refused, so they started to look and they ended up buying just across the road (the other side of Stoneycroft Road, I mean) and are happy there. The size of the development will always mean there'll be a bunch of houses for sale - there's nothing wrong with them at all. I am not saying they're perfect (not at all) and the noise insulation between houses isn't the best (but that's true of most new builds). There is a small Service Charge for 'communal' areas. Trying to think of real negatives, and kinda struggling... There is a constant low-level background drone from traffic on the Parkway (it blends in over time). Parking is sometimes a bit tight and you need to protect your drive or on-street parking space. The white gloss used on the internal doors was crappy paint and it has yellowed a lot over time.
  16. I was responding about experiences with new builds... and once or twice off-plot. I would never buy off-plot again, myself. I have promised myself I will only buy something I can see and feel... not something that is yet to be born from plans (I'm talking about an entire development). Too much risk of things changing and they always leave movement for that to happen. With new builds you can go see the showhome, at least, and see and feel that... remember, the show home will be full of delightful upgrades - this is where you can haggle extras in if the Developer is minded to do so... whether they're minded to do so will depend on their performance that quarter, that half-year, that year... all driven by how the market as a whole is doing, not necessarily their product's desirability. Bids higher than asking price exist, absolutely. It's supply-and-demand basics only... and driven by people making emotional decisions, of course. It isn't always the rule at all... and, as I say, I have never paid the asking price, never mind more than. I'd not say it's typical of cookie-cutter estate offerings... more your property that's ultra-special, a one-off, or in a great location, something that doesn't come up often - what new builds have going for them is warranties, the first-time feel, the way you can influence the design and things like energy efficiency and parking etc..
  17. I have bought plenty of properties and I've never once paid the list price. My first ever buy had a discount of £1,000 on a £60,000 purchase, my biggest discount was £76,000 on a property listed at £278,000. My most amusing was a price paid of £77,777 (because I liked the number) on a house listed at £85,000 (reduced twice to that level). So... don't be taken-in, don't be fooled by "last few remaining", don't give way... if you are dealing with a Developer looking at new builds then try to assess when their end of financial year is... they'll be chasing you if they've not made their numbers. However, among all that positive news is the reality of the times... between 20098 and 2014 things were quite bad in the housing market, and there was great discounts to be had (in the right place) but things a more buoyant now. The trick to buying a house (and this is easier said that done when it's your first one and it's your home and it represents your hopes and dreams) is not to fall in love with a property and then decide to pay anything to get it! With new builds at the early stages... consider things like floor tile upgades, metal sockets and switches, appliance packs, burglar alarms, fencing etc. as upgrades that are "thrown-in" at no extra charge... especially if they're things you'd want anyway... planning and foresight are very useful to you. Whatever you do, do not tell a Developer's salesperson you have that £100,000 as a deposit. They need to think you're a good prospect but pretty near your limit.
  18. I've been doing this for a quite a while. I have never had to follow-through a Section 21 all the way. I don't necessarily like the imbalance that is arising between Landlord and Tenant sides, between Landlord and Government (taxation)... but I'm going to look at this upcoming change objectively... I had always believed the law was fair to both sides equally (others will have their own view, likely coloured by experience). The article uses emotive language like "profiteering" and "at a moment's notice"... the Section 21 has never been "at a moment's notice" and there's nothing wrong with a business aiming to make a profit. Most good Landlords want their Tenants to stay on... this legislation is a broad brush approach to net bad Landlords as well (who'll probably just use other tactics to get what they want and take advantage of the ill-informed)... the beauty of a no fault / no reason eviction (for they are one and the same thing nicely encompassed within the Section 21) was that it allowed some people to obtain Council properties... whereas a Section 8 (for, say, rent arrears) was a thing that the Council would consider as a Tenant making themselves intentionally homeless, therefore they'd be due no help... so that needs fixing as part of this. I don't think it would deter me... the approach of the Landlord wanting to sell or move back in would still be available it seems (and that would be applicable to the OP here). While it can go wrong, of course, it's actually quite close to a pretty good passive income. The need for taking some legal advice, though, is dubious indeed.
  19. What "legal advice" are you thinking of? Doing things legally and legal advice are very different things in my mind... finding a Landlord Checklist will make you aware of the obligations a Landlord has... you don't need to employ a Solicitor for any of the things you need to do... where's your mind at, exactly? EPC, GSC, electrical safety (no certificate required), Landlord Insurance, smoke alarms, CO alarm, advertising, viewings, referencing, Right to Rent checks, How To Rent booklet, Deposit protection, tenancy agreement, Check-In, Inventory, maintenance, taxation (self-assessment).
  20. Bash Street is correct in that it's wise to take precautions... although possibly a little pessimistic about it not being worth the hassle. The effort involved in letting a single property can be much the same as letting numerous, so the real benefits do come with scale, that's true. There is a lot of pre-work to do and I've just taken a friend through it all, much the same situation. What I wrote for them ended up at 10 pages (with some screenshots). Start out by looking on Google for something like "landlord checklist", it'll give you an appreciation of it all. One of the first decisions to take is whether to self-manage or go via an Agent (both have benefits and pitfalls).
  21. For ease of access you couldn't do much better than the St. Paul's Development - The View or The Tower. The apartments are well specified and have good sound-proofing. The Service Charge is extortionate and continues to rise but the service received for that money does appear to be improving (it was quite bad at one point). Ground Rent is on an RPI escalator too, so you'll need to be careful / aware of these costs... likely to be kinda the same in any apartment block.
  22. Not wanting to dissuade anyone from Help to Buy (it is the only way some people can get on the ladder) but people should research it properly before jumping-in, as I feel it is a bit of a trap. I have a friend who got a Help to Buy loan but didn't fully realise how the payback to the Government works... when I explained it all, and showed worked examples, her response was "surely the Government would not do that to its own people?"... welcome to the 21st century.
  23. There is no defence to a properly-served Section 21... as long as all your paperwork and admin. is in order - it will succeed. If your paperwork and admin. is not in order then the Section 21 will never be valid, until you correct things... by paperwork and admin. I mean things like Deposit protection, GSC, smoke alarms, Right to Rent check, How To Rent Booklet served etc. etc. etc..
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